Picking oranges and persimmons- I know this is no big deal for locals, but it's a novel experience for someone from Singapore. It was so sweet (literally and figuratively) to taste a fresh fruit that I had picked myself, rather than one that is imported.
Visiting Old Town Pasadena- the atmosphere of that place reminds me of Europe, especially when night was starting to fall.
Exploring the Botannical Garden- I realized how long it's been since I was in contact with nature and the outdoors. This place is huge compared to the one in Singapore and boasts a fascinating array of flora and fauna. I love rubbing lavender and rosemary between my palms in the herb garden and leaving a lingering scent. I spotted mandarin ducks, herons and a bluejay!
Opening presents under the Christmas Tree- Again, all-too-familiar for some, but a new experience for me. I received a lovely pair of flats from my aunt and uncle.
Visiting the Norton-Simon Museum- Great to see artworks that I know in person. This museum has an especially expansive collection of Degas' drawings, paintings and sculptures.
Riding the train on my own- It felt so relaxing just to read a magazine, watch the scenery flash past my window and observe fellow travellers. Even better when I opened the lunchbox that my aunt packed for me.
Having delicious food- An essential element of any holiday. Highlights include assam laksa, Ipoh hor fun, dumplings and radish cake. The taste of Chinese home-cooked food is so endearing to me.
The best part of the holiday for me? Realizing that there are people out there who are always ready to open their hearts and doors to someone they barely know. Since arriving here, there have been many occasions which made me feel how large the world really is, and how small and insignificant I am in comparison. I'd really been living a sheltered and privileged life. It's amazing to say that here, in the sprawling expanse of the U.S., I've found another family. The thought of having a place always welcome to me is immeasurably comforting. It sounds cliche, but now I think it is true that it all comes down to love. There is plenty of love in the world to go around.
STYLE.com x VOGUE
7 hours ago